Alexandra Daddario is Heather, a young woman who suddenly discovers that she had been adopted and that she has an inheritance from her grandmother. The inheritance is a huge mansion in Texas. This is set in a town that is barely on the map.
Along with a group of friends she takes a road trip to see this inheritance.
The group is made up of her best friend Nikki (Tania Raymonde), Ryan (Trey Songz) her boyfriend, who cheats on her, and Kenny (Keram Malicki-Sanchez), Nikki’s new boyfriend. On their way they end up picking up Darryl (Shaun Espos), a hitchhiker.
In the sprawling Texas mansion they discover they are not alone. In the basement also lives Leatherface (Dan Yeager), a deranged murderer who soon takes a chainsaw to Heather and her posse, adding their faces to his natural mask collection.
Heather learns that Leatherface is her cousin, that her family was killed by the locals who took the law into their hands and that their leader, Burt Hartman (Paul Rae), is now the mayor of the town.
She tries to get help from the town’s sheriff (Thom Barry), a cop with a secret (Scott Eastwood), and the lawyer who managed her grandma’s estate (Richard Riehle). However, corruption is everywhere and she end up teaming up with an unlikely ally.
When in 1974, director Tobe Hooper unleashed the first Texas Chainsaw Massacre, little did he guess that this would become a veritable franchise, spawning video games, comic books, toys and seven films in all.
It is interesting to note that all seven films together have cost approximately $50 million (€38 million) to make and yet the dividends in box-office gold, scares and B-movie slash and hack have been gigantic. In fact the character of the cannibalistic Leatherhead complete with roaring chainsaw has become quite the iconic figure.
This version is more of a direct sequel to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003), which was a reinvention of the franchise with the following Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006) being a prequel.
What this movie aims for and succeeds in, is presenting the sheer chaotic violence and slash and hack terror which here, for added impetus, is presented to the audience’s discomforting pleasure in very effective 3D.
This is a movie for the horror fans, for the ones who like to see heads roll and get a high on hearing the rough sound of that chainsaw. It succeeds were others fail in its single-minded and numbing bludgeoning approach that it adopts towards its audience and is a film that is not afraid to dirty its hands in gruesome scenes.
Yet it never descends into the detached atmosphere of the Saw franchise which had an almost alienating effect.
The cast play characters who are mostly superficial, two dimensional, and I am sure the audience will belaying bets from the start to see who will be the first to get a taste of the chainsaw.
In Dan Yeagar, Leatherhead comes alive and his screen presence is very much felt in a very gutsy manner.
Daddario makes for a good B-movie scream queen and has a likeable screen presence.
John Lussenhop directs this mean film in a gritty style, much more in tune with the original and showing less of the slick flash that the 2003 remake had opted for.
The result is a film that will please the fans of the franchise and those who like their horror served hard.